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Lara Rosales

March 19, 2020

Have you started taking your online classes? Are you freaking over what to do with your thoughts during this quarantine? Then this letter is for you.

Dear college students in quarantine,

Studying from home during any semester can be hard for some students. Sometimes focusing on your classes becomes tough and you find distractions everywhere you look. But right now we are all living through a very unique situation that no one ever prepared us for. Watching the news, scrolling through social media, or even going outside can trigger our anxiety, and therefore making it harder for students to concentrate on their school work. Do you feel like you are more anxious than usual? Is it harder for you to spend a certain amount of time without being distracted? Do you feel like you are about to fail all of your classes? Trust me, that is very normal.

Nowadays, most of your day will be spent trying to get all your homework done. Your teachers —who are struggling and trying to figure out this new teaching way just like you are— have set the priorities for their courses and that will help you know what to get done first. However, you need to focus on your personal priorities as well. You should be taking care of your mental health as much as you are taking care of your grades. This is the reminder you needed to take a few minutes each day to yourself.

It is okay to freak out. It is okay to be sad. It is okay to distance yourself from the news or social media for a little while. It is okay to look for distractions. No one prepared us for a situation like this. Many of you are seniors and were so excited for your last semester. If you are upset and angry about your last semester being online, that is completely valid. You should take the time to process your feelings and deal with this situation in your own terms. There are no rules as to what to feel or think right now.

You should remember to check-in on your friends, as well. You are all probably feeling the same way and going through the same struggles. Text them or FaceTime them throughout the day. Creating a support system is very important in moments like the one we are living, and who better than the people you trust the most? Reach out to them if you struggle with your classes or with your mental health; do not be afraid to ask for help when you need it. If you feel like talking about the Coronavirus is too much, you can always pick different topics to keep all of you distracted. Do whatever works for you and whatever is best for you.

Keep an open communication with your teachers if you are struggling and need help with your homework. Everyone will be understanding and put your well-being first. So check-in with yourself and know that it is okay to ask for help or take time off during this quarantine. There are plenty of people willing to listen and come in as a distraction if needed. Take time to watch movies, listen to music, and read a book. Talk to the people who cheer you up and motivate you to stay strong.

Use this letter as a reminder that things will get better and we will make it through this. Keep yourself motivated and always make sure to take time for yourself. Being anxious about the current world situation and about your grades is very normal; we all are. But make sure you know your limits and distance yourself from the news if you need to for a little bit. Try to make the best out of this situation.

Sending much love and positive vibes your way,

A former student.

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